Caitlin Kelly, at the University of Minnesota, shares retail design insights from The North Face

Though online shopping is bigger than ever before, the bricks-and-mortar retail industry in the United States remains huge—and it's tremendously important to the economy of Minnesota, home of thousands of independent retailers as well as international giants like Target and Best Buy. On October 30, Caitlin Kelly—a New York journalist who's the author of Malled: My Unintentional Career in Retail—visited the University of Minnesota to address the conference "Retail Connect: Who's Minding the Store?"

In her talk, Kelly shared insights gleaned from her stint as a sales associate at a North Face store. Among them: "One of the most powerful tools in every retailer's arsenal already lies in your hands, right now. It lies within every single one of your employees. It is the single most rare and valuable commodity in the's undivided attention."

Coverage of issues and events affecting Central Corridor communities is funded in part by the Central Corridor Funders Collaborative.

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Jay Gabler's picture
Jay Gabler

Jay Gabler (@JayGabler) is a digital producer at The Current and Classical MPR. He was arts editor at the Twin Cities Daily Planet from 2007-2013.


Caitlin Kelly

This is great..Caitlin Kelly's insights can be extended to other jobs we devalue: childcare workers, health aides who care for the elderly and the sick.